Tour Down Under 2011, stage six photo gallery by Graham Watson>>

Team Sky’s Ben Swift ended the Tour Down Under today in Adelaide, Australia, on a high note. The Briton took his second stage win and jumped to third overall in the final classification.

“We made a call today not to challenge for the intermediate sprints, just go for the big one,” Swift said. “Fortunately, it paid off.”

Swift’s Sky squad took control in the last two laps. Team-mates Matt Hayman, Geraint Thomas and then Greg Henderson led the way.

“Matt Hayman was practically like a motor bike on the front, pulling for nearly a lap. Nobody could challenge him or get near him,” added Swift. “Geraint took over. He is so fast at what he does, he just went so quick.”

Henderson’s lead-out was crucial for Swift’s win and the overall classification. He went well enough to take second on the stage ahead of Australian Matt Goss (HTC-Highroad).

Goss lost a chance for the overall win by not placing first or second. He approached the final sprint only six seconds behind overall leader, Australian Cameron Meyer (Garmin-Cervélo). Second place would have giving him six seconds and a win, 10 seconds. As it was, he took four seconds for third place and moved within two seconds of winning the overall.

“I just sat there,” said Meyer, “it was like watching people play chess and having it all unfold before me.”

HTC-Highroad dominated the 90-kilometre stage to place Goss ahead for the two intermediate sprints. He took second for two seconds in the first and just missed out on the second, placing fourth. His efforts may have sapped his strength for the final kick and allowed Garmin to win the chess match.

“In the end, Gossy didn’t have the legs to run first or second and it gave me the victory,” added Meyer. “If you are going to win one, besides a Grand Tour, you want a Protour [Wordtour] race in Australia, in front of a home crowd.”

Meyer, 23, leaves Australia to race the Berlin Six Day and then off to the track World Championships. There he will meet 23-year-old Swift again. Swift’s path to the Worlds in March is via next month’s World Cup in Manchester.

The youngsters outshined Lance Armstrong, 39, in his last international race. South Australian Premier Mike Rann presented Armstrong on the podium after the race and gave him a pair of boots. Armstrong refused to talk to the press. After the presentation, he shoved his way into a waiting car, shut the door on the waiting press and an unimpressive week: 67th overall.

Results

Tour Down Under 2011, stage six: Adelaide City Council Street Circuit, 90km

1. Ben Swift (GB) Team Sky in 1-53-47


2. Greg Henderson (NZ) Team Sky

3. Matt Goss (Aus) HTC-Highroad

4. Robbie McEwen (Aus) RadioShack

5. Juan Jose Haedo (Arg) Saxo Bank

6. Allan Davis (Aus) Astana

7. Andre Greipel (Ger) Omega Pharma-Lotto

8. Romain Feillu (Fra) Vacansoleil-DCM

9. Davide Vigano (Ita) Leopard-Trek

10. Jonathan Cantwell (Aus) Uni SA-Australia all same time

Final overall classification

1. Cameron Meyer (Aus) Garmin-Cervelo in 17-54-27


2. Matt Goss (Aus) HTC-Highroad at 2secs

3. Ben Swift (GB) Team Sky at 8secs

4. Michael Matthews (Aus) Rabobank at 9secs

5. Laurens ten Dam (Ned) Rabobank at 10secs

6. Francisco Ventoso (Spa) Movistar at 17sec

7. Andre Greipel (Ger) Omega Pharma-Lotto at 26secs

8. Blel Kadri (Fra) Ag2r-La Mondiale at 26secs

9. Allan Davis (Aus) Astana at 27secs

10. Luke Roberts (Aus) Uni SA-Australia at 28secs

Lance Armstrong and fan, Tour Down Under 2011, stage six

Lance Armstrong waved goodbye to his fans

Ben Swift wins stage, Tour Down Under 2011, stage six



Brit Ben Swift heads up a Team Sky 1-2 at the finish with Greg Henderson

Cameron Meyer wins overall, Tour Down Under 2011, stage six



Cameron Meyer wins overall for Garmin-Cervelo

Tour Down Under 2011: Related links

Tour Down Under 2011: Cycling Weekly’s coverage index

Cavendish feeling well after relentless night

Cavendish plans to fight on despite Down Under crash

Swift benefits from Sky’s strength and crashes for first win

Armstrong grumpy Down Under due to new doping allegations

Swift settles into Sky’s lead-out role

Cavendish holds fire at Tour Down Under

Cavendish-Greipel duel: Let the fun begin

Sky’s Thomas keeping covered Down Under

Armstrong faces questions on doping investigation and 2009 payments

Armstrong in Adelaide: One more time

Tour Down Under 2011: Who will win?

Tour Down Under 2011: Start list

Farrar heads Garmin-Cervelo’s Down Under assault

Cavendish to face Greipel Down Under with in-form Goss

Cavendish to start 2011 Tour Down Under

Farrar to ride Tour Down Under

Tour Down Under 2011: Stage reports



Stage six: swift wins again, takes third behind Meyer



Stage five: Garmin face final battle at Tour Down Under



Stage four: Meyer holds off sprinters to take overall lead



Stage three: Matthews takes first pro win



Stage two: Swift avoids crashes to take win



Stage one: Goss takes TdU opener



Cancer Council Classic: Goss wins Down Under opener after Sky crash

Tour Down Under 2011: Photo galleries



Tour Down Under stage five gallery



Tour Down Under stage four gallery



Tour Down Under stage three gallery



Tour Down Under stage two gallery



Tour Down Under stage one gallery



Cancer Council Classic gallery

  • Mark Jones

    This is great news and I’m so pleased for Swift and Team Sky who are looking a much better outfit this year with a year’s experience and the new signings that should get them more results. A great start for British riders and hopefully there’ll be plenty more to come to help get 9 riders in the worlds.

  • Reece Hemmings

    Cav owes swift a massive thanks right now, and if he can keep it up this year GB could be looking at 9 world champ spots again
    Also starting to get a good lead out going if everyone is in shape and wants to go, wiggo, millar, thomas, swift

  • arronski

    Nice ride Swifty, Sky are on the up, Ben has a lot of talent !